New York Court Rules Appraisal Case Can Proceed

Mortgage & Real Estate

A New York court has said that an appraisal-related suit involving First American Corp. and its former eAppraiseIT LLC unit, now a part of CoreLogic, can move forward, ruling against a jurisdictional challenge.

The companies had attempted to have the case filed by then-Attorney General and current Gov. Andrew Cuomo thrown out of the state court system for jurisdictional reasons.

The New York State Court of Appeals, in a 6 to 1 decision, ruled that the AG’s office is not barred by federal law and thus is able to pursue claims alleging fraud and violations of real estate appraisal independence rules.

A statement from CoreLogic said, “CoreLogic is disappointed by the court’s decision, as we believe appraisal management services for federal savings associations was an area of exclusively federal control in 2006-2007 and that state agencies may not make the claims asserted in the complaint.

“We note that this decision only concerned jurisdiction, and the court made no determination regarding the merits of the Attorney General’s claims. CoreLogic looks forward to being fully vindicated when this case is ultimately tried. 

“We also note that, after four years of investigation and discovery, the Attorney General recently dropped all damages claims against eAppraiselT and First American/CoreLogic, thereby conceding that no consumers were harmed by any conduct of eAppraiselT or First American/CoreLogic.”

First American had not responded to a request for comment at press time.

The case involves work done by eAppraiseIT for Washington Mutual, and allegations that WaMu pressured the appraisal management company to come back with inflated valuations.

Daily Briefing | Wednesday, November 23, 2011

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